What are the differences?
When we speak of dedicated hosting there’s more to it than just the usual definition of “your own server”. We’ll get into that in a minute. Right now the basic differences are on a dedicated host your code lives on it’s own server separate from other pieces of software. Shared hosting is exactly that – a massive server chopped up allowing multiple (sometimes hundreds) pieces of software to run simultaneously, sharing RAM, disk space and web server workers.
Here at Newbird we provide dedicated hosting. It is true you receive your own instance of a server where your code lives all by itself. Your product is safe from contamination from other pieces of software that could cause issues with the day to day workings of your business logic. Any server administrator worth a dime will tell you if the shared host is set up correctly this contamination won’t cause problems with your code. While this is true, directly, the real cause for concern is the resource allocation. The server administrator worth their weight in gold will tell you however it is always better to have a dedicated host.
Benefits of a Dedicated Host
It might not be obvious at first why a dedicated hosting provider like Newbird might be the better choice vs a shared hosting provider. The slightly lower cost of a shared hosting provider might be an attractive option, but like anything in life you get what you pay for. Most shared hosting providers will not administer or maintain the server for you. They’ll perform server updates/patches as required but some services might be off limits due to the fact that everyone is sharing resources.
If you need a caching layer this might be off limits due to that reason. Dedicated providers aren’t limited in this regard and Newbird has the power to provide any desired service to our customers. Included in these benefits are things like server pools for automatic scaling, speed boosts for page loading times (our customer’s pages are tweaked to optimal performance – load times are less than 3 seconds), and true security in the form of separate machines.
The security aspect of this can’t be stressed enough. On both a shared host and dedicated host, customers can get shell access to their machines. If a customer unknowingly exposes a security hole on a shared host they put all of the people hosted on that machine at risk. On a dedicated host this is not the case obviously; the customer only hurts their own code.
Dedicated hosting is the way to go. You’ll have more options at your disposal and your website will grow with your customer base without the fear of outgrowing your provider.